> Bless Their Hearts Mom: Recipe for the Afterlife? : Near the Exit Travels with the Not-So-Grim Reaper by Lori Erickson
Friday, September 20, 2019

Recipe for the Afterlife? : Near the Exit Travels with the Not-So-Grim Reaper by Lori Erickson

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this book from Westminister John Knox Press, via #Netgalley, , free of charge, for blog review purposes on this blog. No compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it, all opinions are my own

Is there a recipe for a good afterlife? 
In this new book, Lori asks just that question!

near the exit cover


After her brother died unexpectedly and her mother moved into a dementia-care facility, spiritual travel writer and Episcopal deacon Lori Erickson felt called to a new quest: to face death head on, with the eye of a tourist and the heart of a pastor. Blending memoir, spirituality, and travel, Near the Exitexamines how cultures confront and have confronted death, from Egypt's Valley of the Kings and Mayan temples, to a Colorado cremation pyre and Day of the Dead celebrations, to Maori settlements and tourist-destination graveyards. Erickson reflects on mortality--the ways we avoid it, the ways we cope with it, and the ways life is made more precious by accepting it--in places as far away as New Zealand and as close as the nursing home up the street. Throughout her personal journey and her travels, Erickson helps us to see that one of the most life-affirming things we can do is to invite death along for the ride.


Who knew the afterlife could be SO interesting? Lori travelled around the world, and everywhere she went, she inquired on death rituals and practices and this book was the result. She takes the reader on her trip, as she confronts our worst fears (nursing homes) and how other cultures still celebrate the dead, and everything in between. It's part history book, [part celebration of the inevitable, and part how-to book. She never tells you what to believe, which answer is the best, but instead lays it all out for you to take in. Obviously, your influences and experiences, may play into how you take the book, but I look at it as a gentle first discussion of an inevitably we all face. if nothing else, it WILL get you talking about what lies ahead, and that is healthy! I urge everyone to read it!

About the Author:

Lori Erickson is one of America’s top travel writers specializing in spiritual journeys and is an Episcopal deacon. She’s the author of the memoir Holy Rover: Journeys in Search of Mystery, Miracles, and God, which was a finalist for the 2017 Travel Book of the Year INDIES Award from Foreword Reviews. She lives in Iowa City, Iowa, with her husband.

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